Typical 24: Phill Robinson, CEO, IRIS Software

IDG Connect is looking to speak to IT, business and marketing professionals across the spectrum to discover more about their very different, typical working days…

IDG Connect is looking to speak to IT, business and marketing professionals across the spectrum to discover more about their very different, typical working days…

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Phill Robinson

Job title: CEO

Company: IRIS Software

Location: United Kingdom, Datchet

Years’ experience: 26 years


1.    What time do you reach the office each day?
Around 8.30am every morning


2.    Is your job varied?
Yes, from day-to-day my time is spent performing a wide variety of tasks; from liaising with employees to more customer-facing activities.


3.    Is your job creative?
Yes. Creativity is at the forefront of the company; innovative software is what makes us stand out from the crowd.


4.    What do you spend the majority of your time doing?
My passion is managing growth and to guarantee this continues I spend the majority of my time making sure our software enables our small business and accountancy customers to work more efficiently and collaboratively.


5.    Do you personalise your desk?
Yes, I’ve personalised my desk with motivational images from a sporting event. I’m an avid runner having run a marathon, and images of great sporting achievements inspire me to realise my goals. As well as these, I have photos of my children and some of the awards the company has won over the years.


6.    Would you describe yourself as creative?
Yes, throughout my career I’ve relied on my creative streak to ensure software stands out. You won’t get anywhere by following the crowd.


7.    Do you have any quirky daily rituals?
No, sadly I can’t say I’m a very quirky person.


8.    Do you tend to work on your own or with colleagues?
I almost always work with colleagues. Ideas flow and productivity often increases as a result.


9.    How many hours on average do you work a day?
I work nine hours a day, although I will often be replying to emails before I arrive and after I leave the office.


10.  Roughly how much time do you spend each day on email? Taking calls? In meetings?
I spend around two hours on email; another two to three hours on calls and the rest of the day will be filled by meetings.


11.  Do you use social media much for work?
I use social media to oversee the IRIS and KashFlow Twitter accounts and blog pages but I know I should engage with other users more often.


12.  What do you enjoy most about your work?
The part I relish the most has to be knowing we are making a difference to our customers. We do this by offering them the most creative, cost-effective software possible, ensuring small businesses are free from the daily strain of accounting so they can spend this time growing their business. Personally, I see that as more important than any financial success IRIS may enjoy.


13.  What type of music (if any) do you listen to at work?
I enjoy listening to music at home but I tend not to listen to any once I’m at work.


14.  What do you do for lunch?
I usually buy a salad locally.


15.  Do you socialise with work colleagues?
Yes, I socialise with my colleagues at events outside of working hours and once a quarter we get together for a meal.


16.  Are there any tasks (through your career) you’ve been especially glad to get rid of? Yes, I absolutely hated working for a company where I had to manage people out of the business. I’m so proud that I’m now part of the IRIS team which is much stronger than any I’ve worked in previously.


17.  What is your last task of your day?
There is no last task of the day. I may leave the office but I will be emailing or taking calls throughout the evening. Work doesn’t end until I turn off my phone when I go to sleep.


18.  How do you like to relax after work?
Most days I will either be running or going to Pilates after work. If I’m not exercising, I’ll be socialising with my family.


19.  Do you keep checking email through the evening?
Yes, they continue to come through to my phone during the evening and I can’t help but reply.


20.  Do you take work projects home with you?


21.  What would you say to your 20-year old self?
I would tell my 20 year old self to enjoy the journey. At that age I was often too busy to enjoy the work I was doing.


22.  If you could try out any job for a day, what would you choose?  
I would love to be Prime Minister for the day to see what that would be like. I would make sure the Government seriously invests in software and takes the industry seriously as if it doesn’t I believe we will begin to struggle over the next 30 years as a nation.


23.  What device did you use to answer these questions?
I answered them using my mobile phone.


24.  Do you use your own personal device for work?
Yes, I often email using my phone when I’m on the move.


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